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Researching Pupils
· Young people have less power and status than those around them
so may feel that they have to tell others the truth or what others
have told them to say.
· Young people tend to be shy and unlikely to tell the whole truth, so
this will affect the method you use. You would probably use informal/
group interviews as children are unlikely to sit still for long periods of
time and they will feel more comfortable with others around them.
· If you gave a child a questionnaire would they understand it? Also
the wording that you use needs to be considered when collecting
· Who do you ask for consent? You need to get consent from the
parents and teacher and the child needs to understand the
experiment and why its taking place.
· With children and other vulnerable groups, you should always stick
to British Sociological Association Guidelines so you will have their
back up if something goes wrong.…read more

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Researching Teachers
· Have power and status…read more

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Researching Schools
· They are formal organisations with a big reputation (which must remain
undamaged by bad press) and with lots of rules
· Researchers may struggle to get through the hierarchy to gain correct
results and researchers can struggle to gain correct results as the school
can block people out especially if they know something is wrong.
· Meighan (pg.170)- found that schools are reluctant for pupils to talk to
`outsiders' about teachers etc as it could damage their reputation .
Researchers may also put ideas into pupils' heads and they may start to
rebel causing the relationship between pupil and teacher to break.
· Schools are like prisons- in the school you don't behave or see the real
world e.g. you aren't expected to button your shirt all the way to the top in
the real world- but in school you are.
·+ Schools produce secondary resources regularly so a researcher could
use these to save time.
·- Are these resources valid? The school could of twisted them to
make their institution look better.…read more

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Researching Head-teachers
· The head's role is to: protect staff and pupils from bad
press and other outsiders.
· School records are confidential so the head- teacher may
only give out a certain amount of information- only
generalise with pupils not individuals.
· Head- teachers have to be there- but they don't have to
participate. This means that they can hide things if they
want to.
· Practical issues can affect the study done e.g. a male
researcher would find it difficult to study in an all female
school. Also the school calendar doesn't suit the
researcher. This is because by the time they have
established relationships with all members of the school
involved, it is time for another holiday or another inset
day.…read more

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Researching Parents
· You can only really gain contact from parent governors-
unrepresentative, not paid, very dedicated, genuine interest in
education. There are also parents- teacher meetings. But these are
usually very rushed and the real issues aren't identified, parents can
also be distracted by other children or another subject their child is
struggling with.
· Informal contact at the gate can be used but its usually mums that
are there (not dads), only part- time jobs mums or full time mums
are at the gates so there is a selective sample, mums use this time
to gossip, this strategy only works on primary school kids as
secondary/ college children won't have their mums there to pick
them up.
· Also mums don't want to hear that they are bringing up their children
wrong so probably won't respond to anything at all or truthfully.
· The response rate will also be affected by gender, race, social class
etc so once again a selective sample.…read more


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